Marilyn Monroe needs no introduction. As one of the most gorgeous starlets of old Hollywood, Marilyn still inspires lots of interest in her beauty routine today. If you’re looking to steal one of the legendary actress’s best beauty secrets, you’ll be happy to know that it’s probably already in your bathroom cabinet right now.
According to Marie Claire, Marilyn’s makeup artist Allan “Whitey” Snyder relied on using vaseline ($2.49, Amazon) as both a primer and a highlighter for the superstar’s dewy glow. Apparently, Marilyn loved the feeling of petroleum jelly on her skin because it was such a good moisturizer. And to her, moisture meant preserving her youth. She also felt like it gave her a soft focus glow underneath the studio lights whenever she was on camera. So vaseline was not only Marilyn’s base layer before she applied foundation, it was also a highlighter coat on her cheekbones and brow bones to add a little extra gleam. Sometimes Snyder would even put a little bit on her eyelids to make them shine more, too.
We know what you’re thinking: Isn’t vaseline a little heavy to rub all over your face like that? It seems Marilyn didn’t really mind the goopiness of the ointment. As Vogue reports, Marilyn would often wear multiple layers of the petroleum jelly to work — and thick layers at that. It was all about getting that glow just right for the countless movies she starred in. And keep in mind, this isn’t even taking into consideration how much makeup she’d wear on set. Sheesh. It’s a good thing she famously kept out of the sunlight while she was all lathered up!
While it’s probably not a good idea to totally cake your face in petroleum jelly (especially if you’re acne-prone), dermatologists say using the product for skincare does have some great benefits. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, vaseline can be used to relieve and moisturize dry skin, including your lips and eyelids. Petroleum jelly can also be used to rehydrate your nails and cuticles between manicures. Another brilliant use of vaseline involves applying it to your thighs to prevent that pesky chafing during the summer. Wow — all that and Marilyn Monroe was a super fan.
Who knew that one little ointment could make such a big difference?